Why Is It So Difficult To Witness To An Unbeliever?

It can be and is very frustrating when trying to witness to a non-believer, (btw did you know the word “witness” in New Testament Greek means “martyr”?) So not surprisingly it is not too difficult to see that getting through to them is hard. A Bible scripture I find encouraging is found in the Book of Romans:

Romans 8: 5-7 (NASB)

5 For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. 6 For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, 7 because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so, 8 and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

Keep strong in your witness no matter how much you want to pull out your hair!

God Bless

Brian Mason

“The Ten Commandments of Apologetics”

An Excerpt from the book, “Engaging the Closed Minded: Presenting Your Faith to the Confirmed Unbeliever” by Dan Story.

The Ten Commandments of Apologetics:

I. Gospel first, apologetics second: Always try to start a witnessing encounter with the Gospel. The job of apologetics is to pave the way for a presentation of the Gospel. It is pre-evangelism. It is wrong to assume that every unbeliever harbors intellectual objections to Christianity. Hence not every evangelistic situation will require an apologetics defense.

II. Stay with the essentials: Most non-Christians know little about the Bible or what Christians believe and what they think they know is often in error. When sharing the Gospel, avoid theological subjects that will be confusing to unbelievers, like eschatology or predestination. Confirm the message of the Gospel by sharing your personal testimony demonstrating the life-transforming power of the Holy Spirit in your own life.

III. Remember your goal: The goal of apologetics is to overcome intellectual obstacles to Christianity so that unbelievers are willing to consider the Gospel. Apologetics is not theology. You don’t have to give the definitive theological answer to any issue, only an appropriate answer that can be defended scripturally.

IV. Never give people a problem: Never force apologetics on someone or create illegitimate reasons to use it. The impulse is to go out and confront everyone you know and challenge their misbeliefs. Apologetics is not an excuse to argue. Often Christian love and understanding may be all that is needed.

V. Find out the real problem: Sometimes unbelievers will raise issues against Christianity that do not mirror their real concerns. They may feel more comfortable discussing a popular argument rather than what’s really bothering them. Whatever the issues, you must identify them and respond accordingly.

VI. Avoid distractions: Apologetics deals with intellectual obstacles, not moral issues. For example, that a man and woman are living together out of wedlock should not prevent you from sharing Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Nor should it interfere with a discussion of apologetics. God will deal with the moral issues once a person sees his or her need to become a Christian.

VII. Apply evangelistic and missionary techniques: The ultimate goal of apologetics is evangelistic. The purpose is to bring people as quickly and as efficiently as possible to the point where they renounce their non-Christian worldviews and accept Jesus as Lord. It also involves seeking unbelievers on their own turf.

VIII. Know what unbelievers believe: Be as a missionary who before going into a foreign culture learns as much as possible about their religious beliefs, language, social customs, ethical behavior, cultural taboos, and so on.

IV. Don’t be intimidated: Most non-Christians have little knowledge of the Bible and few have read even a portion of it. They seldom ask sophisticated questions or need in-depth answers. If you do encounter questions you can’t answer or arguments you can’t refute, admit it.

X. Keep the right attitude: Don’t be self-righteous or pushy. Try to create an environment that encourages the work of the Holy Spirit.

Through thick and thin, keep your hearts at attention, in adoration before Christ, your Master. Be ready to speak up and tell anyone who asks why you’re living the way you are, and always with the utmost courtesy. Keep a clear conscience before God so that when people throw mud at you, none of it will stick. They’ll end up realizing that they’re the ones who need a bath.€ – 1 Peter 3:15-16 The Message

These are the words and ideas from Dan Story. I wonder how many of you disagree or disagree with any of Dan Story’s commandments? I am personally having an issue with “The Message” translation, but again that is a personal opinion. As I have always thought that, that translation seems to “dumb it down a bit” so I will provide you the NASB version of 1 Peter 3:15-16:

15 but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence; 16 and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame.

I would be curious as to your feelings to any of these “Ten Commandments of Apologetics” and if you agree or disagree with them?

God Bless

Brian Mason

“Faith” What Is It?

The word “Faith” is thrown around so much these days, but have you stopped to think what it is? Seems like a pretty straight forward question with a straight forward answer that must be looked at from Biblical view. Dr John Lennox states, “”Faith is not a leap in the dark; it’s the exact opposite. It’s a commitment based on evidence… It is irrational to reduce all faith to blind faith and then subject it to ridicule. That provides a very anti-intellectual and convenient way of avoiding intelligent discussion.” Very well put. I agree with Dr Lennox on needing evidence and in the Christian faith we have all the evidence necessary to show that God has a master plan.

In the Book of Romans, 8: 24 It is written “For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? 25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.” So even though we have the evidence, the Bible says that what we can see is no hope at all!

So I ask “Is faith Blind?” Is Faith something that one can learn? Ephesians 2:8 clearly says that Faith is a gift from God “8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;” So ask this question: “Since the unbelievers discount Faith as a reason for belief in God, is it something that God has not given them?” I mean we as Christians have Faith and the unbeliever seems to discount it as a “magic pill” and invalid as a defense to our faith. Or is it possible that the unbeliever has faith but not enough of it? Romans 12:3 is written: For through the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith.

Read 1 Corinthians 2: 14, “14 But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised. Notice that the Lord states “…does not accept the things of the Spirit of God”, “…cannot understand them” So I think it is clear that Faith cannot be learned as it is a Gift from God, and that the natural man does not accept Faith. So I must come to the conclusion that Faith is there for all, but some choose to not accept it!

Brian Mason